I couldn’t post anything during the day yesterday, due to connection problems. By last night, when I could post, I couldn’t bear to look at the news yet again. So I watched the “Friends” finale. For those of you keeping score, I thought it was pretty lame. I should have stayed with the public television program on tropical storms.
So now we know the abuses were likely not the isolated practices of six prison guards, that there were multiple reports to the Pentagon, including repeated warnings from the Red Cross, before the first set of pictures were finally broadcast, that the targets of abuse are not always enemy combatants, and that at least two prisoners were killed by their American captors. But Rush Limbaugh says the soldiers were just blowing “some steam off” (makes you wonder how Rush blows off steam when he’s out of vicodin, doesn’t it? Except that you don’t want that “visual”), and a guest on Hannity and Colmes compared the US treatment of Iraqi prisoners to “frat hazing.” Any guesses as to how these idiot commentators will respond if captive American forces are similarly treated by Iraqis? Any concerns about what the Iraqis will tell us to do with our Geneva Conventions?
Predictably, White House apologist Tom DeLay lobbed treason charges at anyone expressing outrage or criticism: “They want to win the White House more than they want to win the war, and our enemies know it.” And the press seems singularly focused on getting the President or Rumsfeld or SOMEONE to “apologize.” Is it just me, or is that a pretty low bar to set? It took a couple days, but once his handlers realized it could turn down the heat a little, he did it. And just how much can we expect to learn from an “independent investigation” ordered by Rumsfeld? Meanwhile, while Democrats in Washington make symbolic calls for Rumsfeld’s resignation, “a large majority of Americans” believe he should not! A few weeks ago, one of the too-many-different-writers-I-read-during-the-week suggested that this Administration might actually benefit from bad news in Iraq, just as it does from good, because Americans rally around the President, not wanting “him” to lose this war. Does Rumsfeld benefit from that, too?
EJ Dionne today: “…dumping Rumsfeld and Myers is not enough. Ultimately the buck stops with President Bush. No, I don’t think for an instant that Bush knew anything about this. That’s the problem. Reports of prisoner abuse have been around since the war in Afghanistan and the opening of the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The president needs to explain why he wasn’t more curious about what was happening, and whether his management style delegates so much authority that the White House could be caught so unprepared for this catastrophe. Are we dealing here with a culture of unaccountability?”
Moving on… (I’ve got to learn how to create headings and delineators; bear with me)
Be very afraid. One of these kids could grow up to run the White House science policies one day…
This almost makes you feel sorry for the guy, until you remember his daddy’s friends gave him your country to play with.
Did you happen to catch the name of the Honorary Chair of this year’s National Day of Prayer?